Submitted by Anne Carr Design.
Anne Carr is a Los Angeles-based home stager and interior designer with Anne Carr Design. She shares her ideas for home styles that attract buyers, as well as a recent staging project that revived a stale listing and garnered four offers in just five days.
Q: Are there any styling trends you avoid when staging a home?
A: I try not to use metallic accents. I think it’s a dated look and can cheapen a room.
Q. What staging styles do buyers tend to like the most?
A: I think buyers like to see up-to-date furnishings that don't look too cold. The all-white trend that was popular recently doesn’t fit most people’s lifestyle on a daily basis. So, it's important not to give any space an impersonal, hotel-type look.
Q: Is there anything you always make sure to do when staging a home?
A: I arrange the room to look its best, not necessarily for practical purposes. For example, I might place a cabinet so close to a table that it can’t be opened and closed properly, but it achieves a balanced look. The same goes for television placement. Some brokers get hung up on whether the TV placement is viewable from different furnishings. I say it doesn't matter for selling purposes, because no one is watching TV while viewing the home!
Q: Do certain colors or patterns resonate best with buyers?
A: People do like to see a pop of color in pillows or chairs. We also like to add an element of surprise through colorful art. The psychology of color says that the majority of people gravitate toward things that are blue. In more modern homes, we will use a neutral palette with more black than we would in a farmhouse style of architecture.
Q: Do you change designs for different seasons?
A: In Southern California, the look doesn't really change that much from season to season. However, we do tend to use more subdued colors in fall and winter. We may add a chunky throw and more organic materials to add texture to the design. Summertime is always a happy time, so we try to throw in some bright colors in our design, especially in the outdoors.
Q: Why is staging so important when showing a home to potential buyers?
A: Staging is really important for two reasons. 1) Most people cannot see beyond what is in front of them. They get caught up in past perceptions, so you need to show them what is possible. Sometimes rooms are awkward, and you need to show people how a space can be best utilized. 2) Some people aren’t very good with space planning. Rooms tend to feel a lot smaller without furniture, so how we place furniture gives buyers a sample of what is possible.
Q: Any other staging tips you'd like to share?
A: We like to use real plants if it's possible for us to maintain them on a weekly basis. Again, it feels less like a hotel to buyers and more like a place they can see themselves living. We rarely use faux flowers unless they are high-quality and look realistic.
Take a look inside Carr’s recent staging project. The home had lingered on the market for 18 months. Carr and her team then staged it. The home received four offers in five days after staging.